The mayor of the third-largest city in Arizona has thrown his support behind congressional candidate Matt Salmon, a potential game-changing blow in the district’s race.
Mesa Mayor Scott Smith announced today that he would be endorsing Salmon over his opponent, former House Speaker Kirk Adams, a decision that he said took a lot of reflection.
“I’ve known both Kirk and Matt for a long time, and I’ve had a great relationship with both of them,” he said. “They’re both very qualified. It came down to, not that either of them is a bad candidate, I just chose at this time to endorse Matt Salmon.”
Smith and Chandler Mayor Jay Tibshraeny announced their endorsement today, adding their names to the roster of three other East Valley mayors: Gail Barney of Queen Creek, Hugh Hallman of Tempe, and John Insalaco of Apache Junction.
In an announcement by Salmon’s campaign, Smith touted Salmon’s “proven track record” of leadership in his district, particularly when it came to economic development opportunities.”
“Matt understands how municipal and federal governments can work together to create jobs and economic opportunity for Arizona citizens,” he said in the written statement.
Tibshraeny similarly said it was Salmon’s experience that led to his endorsement.
“The problems that our nation faces are daunting and Matt’s experience in Congress will allow him to hit the ground running and get to work on finding the solutions,” he said in the press release.
Adams and Salmon will be competing for a seat in what will likely be Congressional District 5 after the Independent Redistricting Committee finalizes and approves its final maps.